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Archive for April, 2012

Time to wrap things up for KCWC! It’s been fun. This is my final project for the week, and I’m pretty excited to take a break from sewing for awhile. And I apologize in advance for way too many photos – I somehow ended up taking 192 of them this morning, and editing down isn’t my strong suit.

Anyway, this skirt popped into my head in the middle of the night last night, and annoyingly, I couldn’t get rid of it for two hours (I could’ve had it made in that time!) – I saw a print awhile back at Land of Nod and I thought maybe I could recreate the textured leaves in shot cotton…one track mind with the shot cotton, I know.

Fall Foliage Leaf Wall Art (image source: Land of Nod)

So I’d been thinking about making something based on this print, then forgot about it, then remembered again at the inopportune hour of 1:00am.

The skirt has a simple elastic waist (a la the Oliver + S Lazy Days Skirt or the MADE Simple Skirt – both can be found for free online) and a one-inch hem.

And after a three day hiatus from chambray, I went back to it – the texture is similar to shot cotton, with two colors woven together, and it seemed like a good neutral background for the leaves.

And she likes it!

She thought hiking it up was pretty funny, too.

Anyway, making this was the easiest thing ever. After you have a few simple elastic skirts under your belt, they only take maybe 30 or 40 minutes to sew.

And the leaf shapes are cut from double stick fusible web (Steam-a-Seam 2), positioned along the stitching on the hemline of the skirt, ironed into place (the fusible web makes them stick – no pins!), and sewn around the edges. Just your basic appliqué with fusible web. The leaf edges will fray a bit in the wash, but I don’t mind that look.

My color palatte is kind of haphazard – I bought several 1/4 yards of various shot cotton colors when I was working on Lila’s birthday Ice Cream dress, not really knowing what colors I wanted to use yet. So I cut the leaves from every color I had on hand – scraps from that dress, and from the orange dress I made this week, then all the random colors that hadn’t been used for anything yet.

And of course I couldn’t resist a little leaf tag in the back:

Okay, that’s it. Just two more photos, I promise.

Pattern: Simple Skirt from MADE or Oliver + S Lazy Days Skirt (minus the ribbon hem)

Fabric: Robert Kaufman Carolina Chambray in Light Indigo Washed and various Kaffe Fasset shot cottons.

Now that I’m finished sewing I get to catch up in the Elsie Marley Flickr Pool and see what everyone else made! I love that part the best :)

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Okay, I finished the last of my pre-cut out projects, an Oliver + S Class Picnic Blouse.

I haven’t felt like thinking very hard these past couple nights, and since I’ve made this one before, I really didn’t have to – it’s a great pattern, and an easy one.

I lengthened it a bit this time – I had originally traced the pattern in a 2T with 3T length, but it still wasn’t quite long enough for me, so I added another 3/4 of an inch or so. I think I’m satisfied now.

I also added piping under the yoke, because piping makes everything better.

Again with the Sailboat pants:

And with the Class Picnic shorts:

Pattern: Oliver + S Class Picnic Blouse, size 2T with added length

Fabric: Lizzy House’s Hello Pilgrim Butterfly

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Blues and greens are definitely my favorites, but I do love this orangey color combination, too:

our fiestaware * a little knit dress she wore twice* our wedding dahlias

So last night I made Lila a simple little dress from orange shot cottons. My local fabric store carries the entire color range of Kaffe Fasset’s shot cotton, which is both amazing and completely overwhelming…but mostly just amazing. I can’t get enough of the stuff – I have stacks and stacks of prints but all I want to sew with these days is shot cotton!

The pattern is Leila & Ben’s Sweet Little Dress, which I’ve made countless times before, though never in solids. There are lots of simple peasant dress patterns out there, but I find this one to be pretty much perfect.

I added the gathered pockets from the Oliver + S Jump Rope Dress (view B).

Pattern: Leila & Ben’s Sweet Little Dress, size 3T

Fabric: tangerine and watermelon shot cotton (and an unknown, accidental third color for the pocket binding)

That’s it for today. Back to blue tomorrow!

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Making shorts in April is jumping the gun by about three months around these parts, but here you have them: Oliver + S Class Picnic shorts.

I bought the pattern for the blouse (made here), but then saw a few versions of the shorts in the Oliver + S Flickr pool that were made up in all one fabric, and I really liked that look. And sorry to bore everyone with this fabric again, but I’m trying to make a few bottoms that she can wear with everything, hence all the chambray. I told you I overused it!

In fact, I got a little tired of looking at the chambray while sewing these, so I decided to go bold with olive green top-stitching. I used the triple straight stitch to make the green stand out a bit, and added a little pop of green inside the waistband.

Speaking of sewing these, mistakes were made. The pattern was flawless and wonderful, as Oliver + S patterns always are, but I managed to sew my two panels as mirror images rather than opposites, which made sewing them right sides together pretty much impossible. So 13 steps into the pattern I had to cut out four new pattern pieces and start over, because there was no way I was taking a seam ripper to all that triple top-stitching. Word of warning: when working with fabric that doesn’t have an obvious right and wrong side, pay very close attention to how you’re sewing things together!

Anyway, I pressed on and I’m glad I did – normally I would’ve quit for the night after a ridiculous mistake like that, but it’s KCWC!

Yep, it was all worth it in the end. Look at that faux fly!!

Pattern: Oliver + S Class Picnic Shorts, size 2T (made with an adjustable waistband)

Fabric: Robert Kaufman Carolina Chambray in Light Indigo Washed, and Lizzy House’s Hello Pilgrim Pearl Bracelet in Green

Up next: probably more blue stuff.

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I purchased one new pattern for KCWC (so far anyway, it’s still early!) – the Round Neck Top from That Darn Kat. Apparently I have a particular fondness for the round neck style – I found four of them in my Flickr stream from the past two years!

The two in the top row are made with New Look 6903, and the bottom row is the Prudent Baby Snappy Toddler top, a free tutorial/pattern in size 12-18 months.

Lila has sized out of both of those patterns, so it was time to find a new one. I’d seen this one floating around in various places, and had lots of fun making That Darn Kat’s undies, so I knew it would be a good choice.

This pattern goes from size 2 to 7, and I was pleased with the fit and sizing (I had to do a lot of tweaking with the New Look pattern). I made a size 3 and it’s roomy, as expected, but it fits. I like the length and there’s plenty of room underneath for a long sleeved shirt. And while we did have three glorious days in the 70s this week, it’s still going to be long sleeved shirt weather around here for quite awhile.

Those are yesterday’s Sailboat pants underneath.

And this is what I get when I request a photo shoot immediately upon waking up from nap. Pouty face.

Pattern: Round Neck Top/Dress from That Darn Kat, size 3

Fabric: Bridle Path from Kate Spain’s Central Park line, and Kaffe Fasset shot cotton in ice

See you tomorrow!

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KCWC has begun!

I decided to kick things off with something simple and practical – a pair of spring pants to match everything. This is my third time making the Oliver + S Sailboat pants, and it’s one of my favorite patterns – Lila lived in her Sailboats last spring and summer. And since she actually wore them (it’s getting rare around here nowadays, her wearing something I make), I didn’t deviate much from the pair I made last April, just sized them up.

Last year’s were definitely starting to show their wear. A little snug around the middle, too.

There, that’s better:

This time I hid some spots and butterflies inside and used square buttons, just to spice things up a little bit.

She says she likes them, so I’m calling Day #1 a success!

Pattern: Oliver + S Sailboat pants, size 3T

Fabric: Robert Kaufman Carolina Chambray in Light Indigo Washed (very soft and lightweight – my much overused favorite!) with Lizzy House’s Hello Pilgrim Butterfly facings

Okay, on to the next project!

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spring kcwc!

You wouldn’t know it from the weather around here, but it’s spring, and that means the next installment of Elsie Marley‘s Kids Clothes Week Challenge!

The challenge is to make time to sew kids clothes for an hour a day, every day for a whole week. I had lots of fun participating last fall and may even have put in a little overtime. Here’s what I made during fall KCWC:

paper airplanes * lazy days skirt * brooke dress * school days coat * simple skirt

I must admit, the coat is really the only thing that gets any wear. But I did spend the majority of the week on it, so that’s fine by me.

I’m hoping to get some spring basics sewn for Lila this time, since she’s outgrown everything from last spring. I have a small stack of patterns traced and cut out – all Oliver + S so far, and somehow everything is blue (including my pin cushion and scissors, apparently). I don’t want to get too ambitious, but there are a couple other patterns I’d love to squeeze in if I have the time.

Anyway, can’t wait to see what everyone’s sewing next week. Sifting through the Elsie Marley flickr pool is half the fun!

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getting crafty

Much like myself, Lila has a special fondness for all things crafty. I have zero confidence that she could pick a tennis ball out of a line up, but she can distinguish between my pinking shears and my scallop shears in seconds flat. In fact, it’s really my craft supplies that she prefers, and she seems to be happiest when she’s making a huge mess. She’s been known (all within the last week) to spill an entire tube a glitter, glue her fingers together on purpose, apply stickers in the most inappropriate of places, take scissors to an entire package of band-aids, and paint herself from finger tips to shoulders (that’s every time the paints come out, actually). Should I be supervising more closely?

Anyway, I think the whole arm-painting thing is why I was drawn to the long-sleeved art smock from Oliver + S Little Things to Sew.

When I bought the book it was the project that appealed to me most, and my friend Trinh made one for Lila last spring. It gets a lot of wear, and does indeed prevent her from painting her arms in their entirety, since she can only access her hands. Foiled!

That’s the one Trinh made for us. It’s in the wash a lot, so I figured I could justify making one myself. I made the medium (size 4-6) so it’s big on her now, but it’ll last a long time.

The main fabric is Raindrops on Posies from Alexander Henry – I bought it to cover the kiddie table for cloud cookie decorating at Lila’s birthday party…

….but then I thought the raindrops looked like colorful drops of paint, and pairing them with these little scissors from Cosmo Cricket seemed like a good art smock combo.

The pattern has some nice details – French seams make it clean and tidy on the inside, and it closes in the back with either Velcro or two snaps (I went with pearl snaps, my favorite).

And while we’re on the subject of craftiness, have you checked out Crafty Chloe?

Our copy was yet another gift from Trinh, and an immediate favorite read. It’s such a cute story, about a girl who also probably can’t identify a tennis ball, but solves all sort of problems with her craft supplies. The illustrations by Heather Ross are delightful.

Highly recommended if you’ve got a crafty kid at home….or you might just enjoy it yourself!

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I saw this pin pop up all over the place yesterday, which led me to Mer Mag’s “Easy Bunny Candy Pouch” – and before I knew it I had some felt bunny pouches of my own.

It was exactly the kind of project I was in the mood for – there’s a printable template, I had all the supplies on hand, and each little pouch took about 10 minutes from start to finish. Embroidering the bunny faces was fun, and you can customize them any way you like – I used the sleepy eyes from the template and added a little mouth, then cut some fabric scraps for inside the ears.

These were so simple to make – cut out a back and front, stitch the little face, and sew the two pieces together, leaving a gap between the ears so you can fill it with treats.

Then tie the ears together, and your bunny pouch is complete!

I haven’t shopped for Easter treats yet so I plumped up the pouches with felt balls for the purposes of these photos. I’m hoping to come up with something besides candy to stick inside – Lila has her first dentist appointment tomorrow and I’m a little nervous…she definitely inherited my sweet tooth. But even if it’s not candy, I think it’ll be fun to get these out every year and fill them with some sort of treat.

Here’s another link to the original bunny pouch post, where you can find the template and instructions. They’re so quick – there’s still plenty of time before Easter to make one (or a whole slew of them) if you’re in the mood!

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